MARTIN, Tenn. – As automakers retool their factories to build electric vehicles (EV), many more EVs will be on the road in the next two decades. To make sure Tennessee is ready, Weakley County Municipal Electric System (WCMES) and the City of Martin are removing one of the biggest barriers to EV adoption in the U.S. – charging infrastructure.
WCMES announced on Tuesday that it is the first local power company in Tennessee to install a fast charger location (109 University Street, Martin, TN) as part of Fast Charge TN, a partnership between the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), and Seven States Power Corporation. This Fast Charge TN installation is part of the regional Fast Charge Network that will cover major travel corridors across TVA’s seven-state service area and will complement the broader efforts of the National Electric Highway Coalition, which seeks to enable long-distance EV travel by placing fast chargers along interstates and major highways throughout the United States.
“We moved quickly to participate in Fast Charge TN because we want to make it easy for people to choose EVs so our community can enjoy the economic and environmental benefits of electric transportation,” Andrea Harrington, General Manager of WCMES, said. “The funding from TVA makes it possible to add fast chargers in our community by providing 80% of the project cost.”
“Fast charging stations provide Tennesseans with an important service, connect our rural and urban areas, and help protect the environment,” TDEC Commissioner David Salyers said. “We are proud to be a partner in this effort and we look forward to the benefits this step will bring to the community.”
TVA and TDEC have brought together local power companies, state and local government partners, and others to pave the way for over 200,000 EVs on Tennessee Valley roads by 2028. The benefits that EVs bring to the Tennessee Valley region are significant:
- Attracting good jobs — $13.8 billion in EV and battery manufacturing have helped create over 10,000 EV-related jobs.
- Reducing carbon emissions from gasoline vehicles by almost 1 million metric tons per year.
- Reinvesting $120 million in the local economy every year from electric refueling.
- Saving drivers up to $1,000 in fuel and maintenance costs every year.
“This charging location does more than charge cars — it connects Martin to the Fast Charge Network and plays an important role in putting our region on the leading edge of the new electric economy,” Mayor Randy Brundige, City of Martin, said.
To learn more about the Fast Charge Network, calculate how much money an EV could save you or locate EV charging stations on your travel route, check out https://energyright.com/ev/.
Learn more about Fast Charge TN here: www.tn.gov/EVFastCharge.